South Korean companies whose revenue relies on global demand are far more upbeat than those oriented at home with the gap in business sentiment widening to a nine-year high.
The business survey index (BSI) of export-oriented manufacturers was 84 in August, 9 points higher than that of locally-focused firms, according to the Bank of Korea on Monday.
A reading below 100 indicates that pessimists outnumber optimists, and a reading above 100 suggests otherwise.
The study is based on 1,800 manufacturers, categorized into two groups. Export-oriented firms are those whose outbound shipment makes up more than 50 percent of total sales while locally-focused firms are those with exports less than 50 percent of total sales.
Exporters were highly concentrated in the electronics and shipbuilding industries while domestic-oriented firms were mostly in the food and beverage, wood and lumber sectors.
The BSI of export businesses has continued to hover above that of domestic businesses this year, with the gap around 10 points. Last year’s BSI gap ranged between zero and four points, peaking at 7 points.
The monthly gap between the January-August period averaged 8.4 points, the highest in nine years since reaching 9.3 points in 2008.
By Boo Jang-won
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]